The advertisement industry is shifting towards automation, and many advertisers now are purchasing digital ads and commercials without associating with print or media companies. As technology advances, new techniques are steadily being examined to produce facilities encompassing the purchasing of ads. The media users are proposing to include automated or programmatic buying to their online advertising toolbelt not only because it makes ad sales more effective but also practical. In the coming future, programmatic buying will be an indispensable innovation to any media buyer’s digital strategy.

Several ad agencies are utilizing tech associates with access to ad markets, while some are developing their own marketing desks to enable them to purchase media themselves. Revenues associated with real-time bidding (RTB) crossed $1.6 billion in 2017, and approximately 34% of all visual advertising revenues are forecasted to generate from RTB.

What is Programmatic Buying?

Programmatic buying is a compelling medium for marketers and advertisers as it automates all of the processes related to ad sales. With RTB, a buyer can set specifications such as network reach and bid price. A programmatic buy will arrange these specifications with an audience or behavioral data all in the same program. “This implies that marketing and advertising professionals can determine the goals, budget, and attribution model while the program quickly adjusts various variables in real-time to ascertain the top campaign settings to reach the desired return on investment (ROI).” Filtering impressions via algorithms based on behavioral information enables online marketers to be more creative and consume less time reading excel sheets.

Programmatic buying is an all-inclusive term that comprises of leveraging technology and big data including ad exchanges, ad networks, trading desks, supply-side platforms (SSPs), demand-side platforms (DSPs), real-time bidding (RTB), exchange-based buying of ad inventory, and ad networks to serve relevant and targeted experiences to users across multiple channels.

The technology does not completely eliminate the human part of the system, but it does exclude the lengthy, dull processes related to manual advertisement buying. Earlier, turning an ad from creative design to visual display involved numerous steps, ranging from analysis, requests and availability, to pricing, purchasing, and uploading. Programmatic buying has modified these actions by taking decisions on the marketers’ behalf by real-time bidding. By omitting the tiresome manual features of ad buying, programmatic has made the process efficient, cost-effective, and transparent. This is a major reason why rising numbers of publishers are using programmatic technology to manage their business.

The Problem Of Ad Blocking

Adblocking presents a great challenge for programmatic buying as internet users are frequently exercising technology as a way to block trivial and irrelevant ads. The increase in ad blocking has emphasized the value of presenting customized experiences that add tangible value. Advertisers and marketers must use flexible technology and audience data to give highly-targeted advertisements, which will enhance rather than interrupt a user’s experience.

Automated media mapping through ad exchanges and DSPs (demand-side platforms) produces enormous advantages to both brand advertisers and direct response. Programmatic buying gives a 100% transparent model where buyers can purchase third-party data to select responses and optimize at the impression level automatically.

Is Programmatic Buying the Future?

Buyers’’ approach to programmatic buying has grown with the recent upgrade in technology. An advanced ecosystem has generated around programmatic buying with specialized providers guiding the process and some considerable agencies developing in-house programs. It’’s secure to say that programmatic buying will ultimately have an influential market share of online display advertising. With the inclusion of RTB on social networks like Twitter and Facebook, innovative strategies will be presented, and like various digital advertising trends, programmatic buying will become an imperative tool.

Let’s have a look at the top 6 facts you should know now about programmatic buying:

  • The Growth of Programmatic Buying: According to eMarketer, programmatic buying is on the course to earn up to $14.88 billion of the nearly $58.6 billion in the digital advertising market. That’s almost $5 billion jumps ahead from 2014 when it was deemed for $9.9 billion. 
  • The Importance Of Data: Advertisers can utilize programmatic buying to fan advertisements over the web and evaluate what’s running best mid-campaign. The factors could range from audience segments, geographies, times of day, and publishers. This will help narrow down their target audience accordingly, so as to pay only for extremely effective ads. This is a drastic transformation from traditional ad buying, where an advertiser is locked into the contract and has to run a specific number of ads with a publisher.
  • Social Media Networks Are Growing: Over the past couple of years, social media networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter have surpassed programmatic ad-tech agencies to sell ads on the web, and not just over their own specific platforms. Keeping in mind the extensive majority of ad-tech companies, these social media networks have an abundance of login information, enabling them to connect user identifications across multiple devices. In the near future, these social network companies will overtake the competition with the probable exclusion of Google. 
  • The Benefit Of In-House Ad Buying: According to Index Exchange, advertisers’ internal programmatic ad buying is the fastest-growing section of programmatic purchasing. Almost 11% of the ads bought via Index were from brands’ in-house teams, and at the figure rose to 15% in a period between 2013-2014.
  • Mobile Devices Are A Threat: The behavioral targeting abilities of programmatic services are majorly bound to tracking cookies. This is a significant obstacle when it comes to mobile devices where cookies are ineffective. The lack of cookie applications in mobile is creating a challenge for advertisers who wish to run campaigns on a desktop or mobile device.
  • Good For Viewability: Sometimes programmatic buying is ridiculed as a collection of fraudulent, nonviewable, and remnant inventory, there are instruments accessible within the platform that enables advertisers to buy ads that are considerably more viewable than others.


While programmatic technology makes marketing easier, the concept can also be complicated as it represents an ecosystem of advertising rather than a particular model of media buying. Programmatic advertising strives to make digital advertising more effective by leveraging real-time data to influence users at the best time and with the most suitable information. At a higher level, applying programmatic could be an expensive operation in-house since all the relevant technology integrations and programs are costly. While outsourcing programmatic isn’t true for all clients, designating resources to skilled partners or agencies with intellectual knowledge and capital might be the best approach to accomplish programmatic buys. 

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